The End is Near – I-9 Verification Changes Effective July 31, 2023

The time is quickly approaching when the joy of being able to remotely review and verify employees’ I9 identification documents is coming to an end, and we are being forced to go back to the old days of physically holding and reviewing all new hire identity and employment authorization documents. With all the bad that came with COVID-19, the ability to review I9 documents virtually for remote workers was a welcome bright spot. However, all good things must come to an end, so as of July 31, 2023, the U.S Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and U.S Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) have declared that we will be back to the requirements of reviewing employees’ identity and employment authorization documents in person and in the presence of the new employee.

Now you may be thinking, “Okay, we did this once before so we can switch gears and go back to the good old days.” But wait, there’s more! Along with the end of virtual verification comes the requirement to go back and re-inspect the documents of all employees who were hired from March 2020 to current if their documents were reviewed remotely (insert scream here). Well before you start stressing and figuring out how am I going to make this happen by the end of July? The good news is DHS and ICE are giving us all a 30-day grace period, so you actually have until August 30, 2023, to get everything re-verified. (As if our to-do lists weren’t full already!) Plus, you may be thinking what about the employees who are no longer with the Company, or how am I going to physically view documents for employees in another state, and so forth and so forth. Luckily, I have some answers for you thanks to the Q&A found on the U.S Citizenship and Immigration Services website.

  1. What if we completed a remote inspection of an employee’s documents but the employee separates from employment with our company before the completion of the in-person document inspection?
    If the employee separates before the physical inspection can be completed, include an explanation in the Additional Information box on Form I-9 and the date of the employee’s separation. 
  2. If our employees are all working across the country rather than in my location, how can I complete the in-person inspection? Are there alternative options?
    Employers may choose to use an authorized representative to fill out their portion of the Form I-9 on their behalf.  Authorized representatives may also complete the in-person inspection as needed. 
  3. How do we document the in-person inspection? Are we having to complete a whole new I9 form?
    No, you do not need to complete a new I9 form. Instead, you just need to document the date of your remote inspection and physical inspection in the Additional Information section (see the example below).


  1. What if the employee presents a different but still acceptable document at the time of physical inspection?
    If the employee presents acceptable documents for in-person inspection that are different from the ones they presented for remote inspection, then the employer may either:
  • (Recommended) Complete Section 2 on a new Form I-9 and attach it to the Form I-9 used for remote inspection; or
  • Provide the document title, document number, issuing authority, and expiration date (if any) of the new document in the Additional Information field and notate that the employee presented this document at physical inspection.

Hopefully, these answers and the FAQs helped to reduce the initial urge to scream and hide under your desk because it’s just one more thing to tack on to your never-ending to-do list. You’ll feel more at ease if you develop a plan and start tackling this project to nail the deadline of August 30, 2023. However, if you still have questions or uncertainty don’t hesitate to call our team at Holden Law Group for support.